Scarlet Fever Band played Mitch & Emily's wedding last night at the Athenaeum in downtown Columbus. Although nearly halfway through September, the summer heat finally gave up the ghost one day earlier, sending a cool breeze down the sidewalks of 4th Street—a perfect night for a beautiful wedding reception.
Our afternoon was, as always, decidedly different from the happy couple; while they were tying the knot, we were in the Olympian Ballroom of the Athenaeum untying knotted audio cables and setting up our gear. It probably comes as no surprise a newlywed’s joyous day is a day of work for us.
But man do we love our job.
Oh sure, we all have “day gigs” too: a few of us in the music business and the rest of us well outside of it. But last night’s wedding got me thinking about how many smiles I encounter in my day job compared to what I encounter during a night with the band.
The minute Scott donned his emcee hat and started announcing the wedding party it seemed like the vastness of that huge, multi-level ballroom still wasn’t enough to contain the smiles of each bridal party couple as they entered and did a signature dance move; the smiles of every close and extended family member watching their loved one bring a new family into the fold; the smiles of every friend as they watched someone they’ve laughed and cried with start their next great journey; the smiles of the bride and groom themselves at seeing all that love in one room, blooming there just for them.
Maybe we don’t know anyone at the wedding and are just there to do our job, but how do we not succumb to the uncontrollable smile drifting across our faces?
Later we played a set of instrumental jazz as the guests ate dinner, and therein was another basket of smiles for my own face as Jason’s walking bass lines locked in with Cory’s “spang a lang” [precise, technical musical term] drumming as seasoned jazz vets Russ Nagy on keyboards, Fred Gablick on saxophone and the amazing Tim Perdue on trumpet played solos that kept that smile plastered all over my goofy face.
Finally it was time to give those smiles right back to the guests as we kicked our regular dance sets into motion. As much as I love playing for our regular following, it’s always such an indescribable treat to play for new people when each time we start a new song, they respond with some version of, “Oh wow, they do this song too? I love this song!” Then more smiles, more funkin’/groovin’/booty-chooglin’ [precise, technical medical term], and more and more smiles.
Thanks to Mitch and Emily for being the reason for one heck of a party. May the smiles continue to accompany you for all your years.